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MAGICAL KELPIES RETURN TO IRVINE AS THE SCOTTISH MARITIME MUSEUM GETS SET TO OPEN THE SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER EXHIBITION SEA MONSTERS!

Opening Saturday 2 July
Scottish Maritime Museum
Harbour Road, Irvine

The sparking steel Kelpie Maquettes made a splash this weekend as they took their place on Irvine Harbourside in celebration of the opening of the Scottish Maritime Museum’s blockbuster Sea Monsters! exhibition this Saturday (2 July).

This the second visit for Andy Scott’s 1/10 scale replicas of his towering, world famous rearing horse heads, which symbolise the horse-powered heritage of Scotland’s canals and mark the gateway into The Helix and Forth & Clyde Canal in Falkirk and Grangemouth.

The two Maquettes, which have taken up position outside the Museum’s Puffers Café overlooking Irvine Estuary, were a popular attraction during the Museum’s award-winning illumination: Harbour Festival of Light in 2017.

The Kelpie Maquettes are one of the highlights of the new Sea Monsters! exhibition which opens with a celebration weekend of mermaids, monsters and fairground games this Saturday and Sunday (2 and 3 July).

Christopher Woodland, Commercial Manager at the Scottish Maritime Museum, says:

We’re thrilled to welcome the Kelpie Maquettes back to Irvine Harbourside. They were hugely popular with visitors last time and, judging by the wonderful response we’ve had already, many more people will enjoy the chance to view these beautiful sculptures up close.

“For those wanting to see a little more of Andy Scott’s work, his ‘Sculpture of a Child’ stands proud at Irvine’s Sainsbury’s just a short walk away.”

The Scottish Maritime Museum’s family-friendly blockbuster summer exhibition ‘Sea Monsters!’ celebrates the fantastical and mythical sea creatures of Scottish legend and maritime mythology across the world.

As well as catching up with the latest news on Scotland’s most famous mysterious sea creature – the Loch Ness Monster, visitors will also discover fabulous fossils on loan from The Huntarian at the University of Glasgow –an Ichthyosaurus (large marine reptile); an Acrodus Anningiae (extinct cartilaginous fish); an Carcharocles Megalodon (pre-cursor to Great White Shark); and a Rhizodus Hibberti (an extinct fish). Then there’s the half man, half fish ‘Sea Monk’ monster from the 16th century – was it real or fake!

Other art on show will include artwork by illustrator and designer Axel Gutapfel and Irvine artist Maree Hughes’ interpretation of the legend of the Selkies or ‘seal people’ from the Northern Isles.

Visitors popping along for the opening weekend of Sea Monsters! are also in for a treat.

A real life, free diving mermaid swimming around a giant tank and two land mermaids will give everyone a rare opportunity to catch sight of these mythical creatures and take a ‘selfie with a selkie’.

As well as six giant, brightly coloured sea monster tentacles swirling around the Museum, everyone will also enjoy a host of traditional fairground games and activities out in the Courtyard.

Games will include ‘Hook-a-Duck’, ‘Hoopla’, ‘Ball in a Bucket’, a ‘Coconut Shy’, Giant Deckchair and crazy mirrors.

The Museum’s ‘Come and Sea Us’ events programme, which runs from now until September, also includes Arts Award family days, sketching, storytelling, music, poetry and performance art workshops, Magic Carpet storytelling and singing sessions for under 5s and their carers, ‘Make and Take’ craft sessions for older children, STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths) activities and special ‘screamings’ of sea monster-themed films.

The ‘Come and Sea Us’ programme has been made possible by the support of the Museum and Galleries Scotland (MGS) Museums Recovery Fund.

Up to three children receive free entry with each Adult/Concession ticket.

The Kelpie Maquettes are on display next to the Scottish Maritime Museum’s Puffers Café on Harbour Street, Irvine, between 10am – 5pm daily as part of the Museum’s Sea Monsters! exhibition and the North Ayrshire Making Waves Festival.

For more information about ‘Sea Monsters!’ and ‘Come and Sea Us’ events,
visit www.scottishmaritimemuseum.org or follow @scotmaritime on social media

Issued on behalf of the Scottish Maritime Museum by
Joanna Harrison, Mobile: 07884 187404

Notes to Editors:

Museums Galleries Scotland is the National Development Body for museums and galleries in Scotland and offers strategic development support to the sector. For further information about Museums Galleries Scotland visit www.museumsgalleriesscotland.org.uk/about-us/

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